Todd ArcherESPN staff writer4 minutes to read
INDIANAPOLIS — Dallas Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones was delayed to NFL scouting Friday due to inclement weather, but still spoke on the team bus for more than an hour, broaching a number of topics.
The Cowboys are now 27 seasons removed from their last Super Bowl after losing the playoffs for the second year in a row to the San Francisco 49ers in January, but they’re still focused on their championship drought; Just aiming to get it done in 2023.
“I don’t get discouraged when you say, ‘You haven’t been to a Super Bowl in X years,’” Jones said. “I don’t because I could have won the last five games and I still might not make it to another Super Bowl, and I have to work hard.” In order to get to the next Super Bowl it’s like you’ve lost five or four. This is the reality.”
To return to the Super Bowl for the first time since 1995, the Cowboys will have to resolve several issues with their roster.
Although he did not extend Dak Prescott’s contract, he believes the quarterback can carry on from a season in which he tied for the NFL lead in interceptions (15) despite missing five games.
“He has the physical skills to do it at the level to win a Super Bowl,” said Jones. “Does he do it with some of the same nuance that many other quarterbacks do? A de-misleader. If I pick someone I’d say, ‘Now go right your wrongs, improve or do it?’ I’d rather start with him as raw material than with anyone I’ve been around.” in this post.”
Prescott has a $49.1 million salary cap that the Cowboys could cut through a restructured or extended contract. Jones acknowledged the difficulty in improving players around Prescott because of the contract.
“We want to get all the help around him, but as we know when you have a paid competitive quarterback in the NFL, you’re not going to be able to get as much skill around him,” Jones said. “You’re going to have to pick your positions and it’s going to be a little slower than next year – you’re not going to be slow in terms of speed, just in what you’re doing. You can’t push that position – forget Duck – you can’t push that position at that level, take that amount of dollars available and put the thing exactly around it.”
Which is why Jones believes the biggest offensive improvement will come from head coach Mike McCarthy becoming the starting quarterback.
“The natural thing to do to look at how we can offer more of what Duck can be is to call out what Mike can bring to the table,” Jones said.
Jones wasn’t ready, saying the Cowboys plan to use the franchise’s $10.1 million mark to bring back Tony Pollard by Tuesday. The Cowboys met with his agent on the set but haven’t had major negotiations on a multi-year agreement yet.
“I really don’t want to say it’s something that’s been done [using the tag] Because as these things progress, you don’t know where you are until your deadline has come and gone, Jones said. “But for now, Tony is definitely a big part of our plans.”
And what effect does that have on Ezekiel Elliott, who has a maximum figure of $16.7 million? Jones did not rule out his ability to keep both players in 2023. He said Elliott was limited by a right knee injury last year.
“I know I have a reputation for being reluctant to look at great players as they enter the final years of their careers, but I don’t need [an] Empathy or I don’t need to feel like, ‘Look what he did for us’ to play the tape and look at the difference maker he was last year to the end of the year,” Jones said. He made the plays. He made runs that we didn’t that could have been more negative than it turned out.”
The Cowboys will have to take steps to get into the cap when free agency begins, but that could happen with potential contract reworks and player releases. He said the Cowboys will rely on young players in 2023, but also added playoffs.
“I want to tell you, don’t refuse us doing something special with the right veteran free agent,” Jones said. “Anywhere. I will, in a minute in New York, if I think it suits us more than a short-term situation.”
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